Student interventions at West Dean Arts & Craft Festival, 2-4 June

As part of the 2017 Art and Crafts Festival, full-time Visual Arts students at West Dean College were invited to submit proposals for artworks to be displayed in the Historic House. Five works were selected to be on display during the event, the only occasion when the House is open to the public. The works include sculptures inspired by Edward James’ patronage of Leonora Carrington; his long-term friendship with George Balanchine and Lincoln Kirstein  (co-directors of the New York City Ballet); a plaque commemorating James’ vision of creation in the Old Dining Room in the 1930’s; a floating paper sculpture inspired by the work of René Magritte; and a kinetic sound installation exploring complex relationships between rhythm and chaos. Continue reading

Open Day – Saturday 4 February 2017

John Walls by Christopher Ison

On Saturday 4th February West Dean College will be holding an Open Day for students interested in learning more about programmes of study both in the School of Creative Arts and the School of Conservation. All prospective students will get a feel for the College’s immersive creative atmosphere, will tour the student accommodation and Library facilities, glimpsing the historic interiors of the Main House used for site-specific work. Prospective Visual Arts students will be invited to tour the large spaces housed within the Edward James Studios, learning about various facilities and services available as part of the programmes. As well as connecting with Programme Leaders and Tutors, visitors will meet current students who can further inform them about student life and opportunities, as well as other staff members who can discuss funding options. Continue reading

Who Counts as Community?

As a student of Visual Arts at West Dean College I am exploring how textiles can be functional through the use of ancient techniques applied to contemporary practice, not only from an artistic point of view but also questioning the sustainability of crafts and the wider ecology of my work. As well as the larger college and local community, I have so far had great help from the Gardeners, Hospitality team, Estate Management and the Shepherd, to mention a few. Continue reading

Visual Arts Summer Show 2015

West Dean College MFA Summer Show. Sarah Heenan's Variations on a Theme Picture date: Friday July 3, 2015. Photograph by Christopher Ison © 07544044177 chris@christopherison.com www.christopherison.com
Sarah Heenan, Postgraduate Diploma
Variations on a Theme, mixed media installation
Photograph by Christopher Ison ©

Read on to see some of the work exhibited at Divergence the West Dean Visual Arts Summer Show 2015! The exhibition includes work by students graduating from the Graduate Diploma, Postgraduate Diploma and MFA programmes. We will be taking some of the work to London’s Brick Lane Gallery Annexe from July 16-19, so please join us for an opportunity to see excellent work by emerging artists. Continue reading

Visual Arts Summer Shows

West Dean Visual Arts Summer Shows 2015 web West Dean  Visual Arts is pleased to announce its Summer Shows 2015, to be held at the Edward James Studios at West Dean and the Brick Lane Gallery Annexe in London. The exhibitions showcase the work of fourteen students graduating from the full-time Visual Arts programmes at West Dean College, including Graduate and Postgraduate Diplomas and MFA degrees. Exhibiting students will present work developed over a year of intensive study, providing visitors with the opportunity to view original pieces from a group of newly emerging artists. The exhibitions include a variety of media, including painting, sculpture, hand-woven tapestry and textiles, printmaking, video and installation. Continue reading